Beyond your own memory, the best thing to have in your database is access to other people’s stories.
I read. I write. I write about books I read and movies I watch.
I connect people to books that might offer help, educate or entertain.
A room in my house called the “library” is dedicated to books. Each book has to earn its place on a shelf.
A video collection of nearly 500 DVD movies represents some of the keepers.
I have read books and watched movies for decades. Old movies, new movies, old books and recent releases . . .
Because stories captivate. Good stories endure. Classic literature teaches lessons that anyone’s lifetime of living cannot contain.
Current books and movies take the culture’s pulse and temperature, indications of health or sickness.
Books and movies offer anyone who engages a cultural and trans-cultural education that extends beyond boundaries of time and space and even recorded history.
Reading and watching movies, I have learned things from people I have never met. People I will not meet. People I cannot meet because the people who wrote the book or made the movie are dead.
Or because, some people never lived except as characters in a book.
Still, I can benefit from both the real and imagined experiences of others. Get in the skin, the shoes, the mind of someone like me, or someone nothing like me.
As a reader or a viewer, when and if I can shift to see situations from the viewpoint of someone else, my own perspective enlarges.
More data. More self-awareness. More compassion.
To teach. To inform. To entertain. Most of all, to affect people, books and films have value.
When I read, I think of other readers.
When I go to the movies, I think of other people who might enjoy this film. Or not.
Not every book is a work of art, great literature, or of lasting value.
Not every movie is a film worth preserving.
Not every book or film is worth reading or viewing.
On this website, I act as editor. Or curator. I don’t read everything. I don’t read fast.
I read true. I seek the truth that can be found in almost any story.
Whether watching a movie or reading a book, my subconscious seeks to solve other people’s problems.
Why, I wonder, does it seem that other people’s problems are easier to understand and untangle than my own?
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